Lots on my mind this week. Mainly, I’m just so dang happy right now and that’s worth writing about.
This past weekend, I turned the big 3-0. Let me tell you, it was pretty exciting for a handful of reasons:
1) It’s a big milestone. I am THRILLED to be entering a new decade of my life. No more excuses – I’m a real adult now! 😉
2) Just a short 6 months ago, I didn’t know where I’d be now. It was really day-by-day for quite some time, so it’s pretty great to be here. Another trip around the sun always feels good.
3) My birthday celebration was FILLED with so many fun birthday surprises. I have the most wonderful friends on the planet and I’ve never felt so much love!
Last Thursday started my April treatment and I was out of the office for it. Details about that day here (in case you missed it). A few months back, my sister (Lauren) and Melissa (co-worker, Lauren’s best friend, and just all around wonderful human) told me to take Friday off work too for fun birthday things but I wasn’t allowed to ask any questions. As the day got closer, they told me to pack a few things but I still couldn’t ask questions. Friday morning came and they picked me up and didn’t tell me anything. About 45 minutes into our drive, they made me guess where we were headed. I’m so directionally challenged that I had no idea (facepalm). So, I looked at Google Maps and realized we were headed West. Which could only mean one thing – DISNEYLAND!
The entire car ride was filled with fun gifts and surprises for Disney. We got to LA and entered our Airbnb. I walked in and a strange man was sitting on the couch and said, “Well, what took you guys so long?!” Okay, just kidding, it wasn’t a strange man at all, it was Dan! So yay! He was joining us for the Disney adventures. Then about 15 minutes later, the door opens and people start walking into our Airbnb. I seemed to be the only one concerned that strangers were just waltzing in, but then Craig, Matthew and Brooke turned the corner! So many surprises and so many friends! I obviously thought Disneyland was the surprise, so needless to say I didn’t see any of this coming. Lauren and Melissa really orchestrated it all perfectly. We went to dinner that evening in Downtown Disney and went to bed early so we could be well-rested for our Disney day.
The next day, we woke up and went to the park before it opened. We spent FIFTEEN hours between Disneyland and California Adventure. We rode all the rides, wore matching shirts (another surprise), and had SO. MUCH. FUN. To be honest, I was a little worried with how I’d feel. I get tired pretty easily, but I even surprised myself with my stamina! It might have been the adrenaline rush, or maybe the churros and dole whip, but I did it! I lasted the whole day (and then some). Not going to lie though, I had some tears walking back to our Airbnb because my body hurt so bad – but we also walked about 14 miles and were on our feet all day. We left the next morning and headed back to Phoenix. I cried in the car on the way home because I was just so happy. I’ve been looking at my pictures all week long because it melts my heart and makes me smile SO BIG. My friends gave up their entire weekend to drive to California and spend time celebrating me! I still don’t know how I got so lucky to be surrounded by such awesome humans.
I got home and went to my parents’ house for more birthday celebrations. I got there and both Mom and Dad were wearing the matching shirts – which was hilarious and awesome. Dan surprised me with his birthday gift – something so unique that I would have never in a million years guessed it. Get this – he found an old printing press drawer that he converted into a picture frame of sorts. In the frame is the front page of the local newspaper the day I was born and below it is an Arizona license plate from the year I was born. It’s so thoughtful! I’ll throw a picture below in case I’m doing a horrible job describing it 😉 We made homemade pizza on the grill and just spent some quality time with the Fam Bam + Dan. Just when I thought we were out of surprises, I got home to some very elaborate chalk art on my driveway. My friend Sam decorated my house for my birthday! My neighbors have been wishing me birthday all week long hah.
This week, I got a random message from someone that read my blog. She said something that really stuck with me. She lost her mother to stage 4 ovarian cancer a few years back and really gets how cancer can really mess up your life. But, she reached out to me and told me that she liked reading my blog because somehow, through all of this, I’m still me. It’s strange because I had never really thought about that before. I can’t imagine not being me. And this past weekend, I felt like I was the one of the best versions of me that I’ve been in a long time – smiling, laughing, full of gratitude, and having fun at the happiest place on Earth with some of my favorite people. I got to put my cancer life on hold for a few days and selfishly celebrate me.
I’m sure if you follow me on social media, you’re probably sick of seeing these photos. But they make me so happy so I’m going to keep on plastering them everywhere!